Those Jaws Tho

In 2018, an unassuming high school garnered national attention for doing a stage version of Alien and so, being a theater teacher myself, I thought… hey, we can do that too!

So, I began writing a stage version of Jaws. Unfortunately, the script was never finished which is probably for the best.

THOSE JAWS THO’
THE THEATER SHOW FOR THEATER
By Jason Gaston

SCENE 1

TOM and CHRISSIE enter the empty stage.   Blue fabric or cutouts simulate water.

CHRISSIE:  Come on, Tom!  Let’s go swim in the water.   That water over there where the ocean is!

TOM:  I don’t know, Chrissie!   Lots of people have been getting mysteriously eaten in the ocean.  I think that the swimming might have something to do with it.

CHRISSIE:  Fake news!  The ocean is as safe as leaded gasoline, and the Birdbox Challenge!  

TOM:  But victim after victim have been attacked by something in the water and those who did survive had their legs bitten off by a huge set of jaws.   A set of jaws that can only belong to something big and powerful.  Jaws so massive that they dwarf any other jaws in the ocean.   The press even has a name for this unknown creature with jaws.

CHRISSIE:   Really, what are they calling this “unknown creature?”

TOM:  Chompers.   I’m not getting in that water!   I like my legs and I don’t want to lose them.   You might say, I’m even attached to them.

CHRISSIE:  You’re a coward!   Here, I’ll show you that there’s nothing to be afraid of.   Here I go!

Chrissie jumps into the water and “swims.”

CHRISSIE:  Come on in, the water feels great!

TOM:  Heck no!

CHRISSIE:  Come on, Tom!   It’s a beautiful night.  The moon is bright, the water is cool and refreshing, and there’s no way that anything bad will happen to the first two characters that are introduced in the play!

An almost but not quite Jaws theme begins.

TOM:  Chrissie, I think you should get out of the water.

CHRISSIE: Why?   Are you scared?  Scared little chicken man?   Bawk bawk bawk!

A fin appears in the water.

TOM:  I’m not scared!   If watching horror movies have taught me anything, it’s that, when an ominous theme song starts to play, it’s time to get out of the water and run!

CHRISSIE:  Fine, I guess I’ll get out of the water if you’re going to cry about it.  It’s not like anything is going to happen in the time is takes me to swim to shore.

The shark attacks.  The shark can be a stuffed animal, cut out, or whatever.   The cheesier, the better.  Chrissie’s death can be exaggerated with her being pulled from one side of the stage to the other as she screams.   Finally, she goes under.

SHARK:  OM NOM NOM NOM NOM!
TOM:   Chrissie, are you okay?

There is a loud belch from the water.

TOM:   Chrissie?   Chrissie?   Are you okay?

The shark spits a body part out of the water.   A leg, arm, or head – whatever we have lying around the props loft.   Tom picks it up.   He looks at it, and then back in the water.

TOM:  Are you okay?

BLACK OUT

SCENE 2

BRODY MARTIN, the local Sherriff, and a DEPUTY and a DOCTOR are on stage.   Both are looking at a body covered by a blanket.  TOM is there as well.

MARTIN:  So, you’re saying that you saw her go into the water.

TOM:  Yep.

MARTIN:  And then she was pulled under.

TOM: That’s right.

MARTIN:  And then you saw a big fin.

TOM: Yessir.

MARTIN:  Well, I’m stumped.   What do you think, Doctor?

DOCTOR:  There’s no doubt about it, Sherriff Brody Martin, this has got be worst case of being eaten I’ve ever seen.

MARTIN:  It’s not contagious, is it?  I’d hate to have an epidemic, doctor.

DOCTOR:  No, sheriff, getting eaten is a perfectly harmless phenomenon…   Well, if you don’t count being dead and everything.

MARTIN:  Thank you for coming out, Doctor.  We would have never cracked the case without you.

The doctor nods and leaves.  Tom goes with him.

DEPUTY:   What do you think, Sherriff Martin?

MARTIN:  Obviously, there’s something in the water eating the tourists.   I’m no expert, but if I were a betting man, I’d say it was a largemouth bass or a lion on a jet ski.

DEPUTY:  We’re not equipped to deal with either one of those scenarios!  Gollie gee, Sherriff, this sure is a sticky situation.

MARTIN:  You’re telling me, but if there is a lion on a jet ski eating tourists, we have to close down the beaches and we have to do it right now.

The MAYOR strides in.

MAYOR:  Not so fast, Sherriff Martin!

DEPUTY:   It’s the Mayor!

MAYOR:  Look at this island!   Already Frank’s Fish and Chips has closed down as well as the Movie Theater and 24 hour Humus restaurant.   We’ve got to cover this up and keep the tourists from learning about this… what is it? 

MARTIN:   We think it’s a lion on a jet ski.

MAYOR:  We cannot allow the tourists to learn about this lion on a jet ski.  This island cannot stand another economic blow!

MARTIN:  But mayor, tourists getting eaten IS terrible for the tourism industry.   Just like when Donald Duck ate those tourists at Disneyland… it’s taken those parks years to recover from that debacle.   If anyone goes into that water… the water over there (points to the water), they will get eaten!

MAYOR:  Well, as long as they spend money in our fair community first, it’s a win-win.

DEPUTY:  Sounds more like a win-lose.

MAYOR:  Whatever the case, I declare that the beaches stay open. (claps hands)  All right, you can all come in and enjoy the sun and the surf!   Cash and credit cards accepted!   No checks!   I’m looking at you, Bill!  

The beach is populated by tourists now.   The sheriff looks around.

MARTIN:   I can’t guarantee the safety of these people! 

MAYOR:  Who can guarantee anything these days?   I tell you what, if they’re eaten, they can have their money back.

MARTIN:  You can’t just open this beach!   What about the body?

The mayor picks up the sheet (and body) and throws it back into the ocean.

MAYOR:   YEEEEET!   It’s called recycling.

Tourists are now in the water.   A fin is traveling back and forth in the water.

MAYOR:  Relax, Sherriff, it’s perfectly safe!

A tourist screams and goes under water.

MARTIN:  Really?   Then what’s that?

The mayor looks.

MAYOR:  What’s what?  I don’t see anything.

Another tourist gets yanked under with a scream.

MARTIN:   That right there! 

MAYOR:   That?   That’s a seahorse.

MARTIN:   A seahorse?

Another tourist is yanked under with a scream.

MAYOR:  A big seahorse.

TOURIST #1:   OMG!  SOMETHING JUST ATE MY HAND!

TOURIST #2:  SOMETHING JUST BIT MY LEG OFF!

MAYOR:  It’s all right, everyone!  The seahorses are just being playful!

BACKOUT

SCENE 3

Martin is in an office.  Talking on the phone.

MARTIN:  Yes, I understand.  Yes, I know about the attacks on the beach.   It’s tragic, but the mayor assures us that, once the body parts are cleaned up, the beaches will be perfectly safe.   Yes ma’am.   That’s what he says.   Enough about that, how’s Tom doing?    Torn to shreds, huh?   How’s his wife taking it?   Torn to shreds, huh?

The End for Now.

Actually, probably forever.

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